Two people are injured and three have been displaced after a Wednesday night house fire in Gaithersburg, Maryland, that investigators traced back to a bedroom space heater that ignited sheets on a bed.
The fire caused over $500,000 in damage to the town house.
Montgomery County first responders were dispatched to a town house fire in the 800 block of Bayridge Drive, just north of Quince Orchard Road, around 11:30 p.m.
Crews arrived to find a widespread fire in the three-story building’s basement, which had spread and caused the first floor to collapse.
Fernshire Farms, 800blk Bayridge Dr, Gaithersburg, MOR TH, @mcfrs FFs rescued 1 adult male from the basement (transported Pri1), 2 other occupants self-rescued, fire appears to have originated in basement, smoke alarms were present & activated, significant damage pic.twitter.com/RnHt33jVHU
— Pete Piringer (@mcfrsPIO) December 3, 2020
A man was rescued from the basement and taken to a hospital in critical condition suffering from significant burn injuries and smoke inhalation, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesman Pete Piringer told WTOP.
Several other occupants got out safely after hearing a smoke alarm; one additional adult was treated for minor injuries.
Investigators believe the fire started when a space heater running near a bed in the basement caused the bedsheets to ignite. The man who was later rescued from the basement had tried to escape and left the bedroom’s door open, allowing the flames to spread, Piringer said.
Sixty-five firefighters assisted in putting out the blaze, Piringer tweeted.
Below is a map of the area:
WTOP’s Fonda Mwangi contributed to this report.